Brown Jay: Large, crestless jay with dark brown upperparts and paler brown underparts grading toward white under white-tipped tail. Head is darker brown with thick, black bill. Legs and feet are black. Feeds on insects, eggs, vertebrates, seeds, nuts, fruits and berries. Steady and bouyant flight.
Range and Habitat
Brown Jay: Rare resident in extreme southern Texas; also found in the tropics. Preferred habitats include dense streamside woodlands and thickets.
The Brown Jay is the largest North American jay.
They seem to be more abundant today than in the past. The extensive tropical forests of Mexico and Central America, which they avoid, have largely been cleared and replaced by farms, plantations and various second-growth habitats in which this bird thrives.
They vary in plumage geographically: there are two main groups. Northern birds are almost completely dark brown, with lighter brown underparts. Southern birds are white-bellied and have white tips on the outer tailfeathers.
A group of jays has many collective nouns, including a "band", "cast", "party", and "scold" of jays.
The Brown Jay has a large range, estimated at 680,000 square kilometers. It is native to Belize, Costa Rica, Honduras, Panama, Guatemala, Nicaragua, the United States, and Mexico. This bird prefers ecological systems ranging from a dry savannah to tropical and subtropical forests as well as plantations, arable land, and former forests. The global population is estimated to be between 500,000 and 5,000,000 individuals. The population trends have not been determined, but the population is not thought to be experiencing a decline that would necessitate inclusion on the IUCN Red List. Because of this status the evaluation level of the Brown Jay is Least Concern.